GCAPs are neuronal Ca(2+)-sensors playing a central role in light adaptation. GCAPs are N-terminally myristoylated membrane-associated proteins. Although, the myristoylation of GCAPs plays an important role in light adaptation its structural and physiological roles are not yet clearly understood. The crystal-structure of GCAP-1 shows the myristoyl moiety inside the hydrophobic core of the protein, stabilizing the protein structure; but (2)H-solid-state NMR investigations on the deuterated myristoyl moiety of GCAP-2 in the presence of liposomes showed that it is inserted into the lipid bilayer. In this study, we address the question of the localization of the myristoyl group of Ca(2+)-bound GCAP-2, and the influence of CHAPS-, DPC-micelles and DMPC/DHPC-bicelles on the structure, and on the localization of the myristoyl group, of GCAP-2 by solution-state NMR. We also carried out the backbone assignment. Characteristic chemical shift differences have been observed between the myristoylated and the non-myristoylated forms of the protein. Our results support the view that in the absence of membrane forming substances the myristoyl moiety is buried inside a hydrophobic pocket of GCAP-2 similar to the crystal structure of GCAP-1. Addition of CHAPS-micelles and DMPC/DHPC-bicelles cause specific structural changes localized in and around the myristoyl binding pocket. We interpret these changes as an indication for the extrusion of the myristoyl moiety from its binding pocket and its insertion into the hydrophobic interior of the membrane mimic. On the basis of the backbone chemical shifts, we propose a structural model of myristoylated GCAP-2 in the presence of Ca(2+) and membrane mimetics.
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